FOUNDER-PRESIDENT STEPS DOWN
ALPS Founder-President Guido Saliba has stepped down at the
end of the Association’s 10th anniversary celebrations.
Over the past months he had only kept his post in deference
to the wishes of the vast majority of ALPS members, who wanted
to see him preside over this landmark in the life of the “baby”
he delivered in 1994.
The Council of Administration unanimously thanked Guido for
all he has done and appointed Deputy President George Stagno
Navarra as Acting President until the next AGM. Dr Saliba
was appointed Honorary President for Life, and in the interests
of continuity accepted to act as Deputy President for the
rest of 2004.
WHAT A MONTH THAT WAS!
March 2004 was a month that will go down in the annals of
the Association of Lyceum Past Students not only as its 10th
anniversary month but also as one that will remain hard to
beat for the success achieved in the activities organised
to celebrate that anniversary.
People who went to the Concert of Compositions by Charles
Camilleri at the Corinthia Palace Hotel, Attard, on 4th March
are still talking about what a huge success it was. And well
they may. Going by the size of audiences at previous editions
of the “Windows on Music” series, organised by
the Manoel Theatre Management Committee and the Faculty of
Mediterranean Studies at the University of Malta and sponsored
by the Malta Tourism Authority, the Corinthia laid on a much
larger number of chairs for the concert, conscious of the
publicity that it had been given both by the organisers themselves
and by the Association of Lyceum Past Students, whose 10th
anniversary the concert was also meant to celebrate.
Oh, how gratifying it was to find, well before the established
time of 7.30 p.m., that parking space all around the hotel
was at a premium, and to see hotel staff scrambling to bring
out almost as many more chairs as had already been arranged
around the large Chameleon Lounge of the Corinthia Palace
Hotel. When there was no more space to put chairs in, people
still kept coming, some of them ending up sitting on the edge
of the stage! That puts the size of the audience somewhere
between 500 and 600 people – unprecedented and very,
very hard to beat!
The concert and the organisers were honoured with the presence
throughout – and closing address – of President
of Malta Guido de Marco.
Admittedly, besides the usual fair amount of publicity for
“Windows on Music” evenings, this one had had
the benefit of publicity across a good cross-section of the
local media, aided no doubt by the news conference given by
the ALPS Council of Administration the week before. A word
of thanks goes to all the media that lent us some of their
valuable space, including the “Meander” cultural
programme on Public Broadcasting Services.
The programme presented soloist trumpeter Sigmund Mifsud
with the Strings Orchestra of the Johann Strauss School of
Music, Sarah Spiteri on the violin, Eric Azzopardi on the
pianoforte, clarinetist Godfrey Mifsud and world-renowned
clarinetist David Campbell, whose performance was sponsored
by international music publishers Boosey & Hawkes and
whose flights from London and back were sponsored by Air Malta.
Mezzo-soprano Claire Massa, accompanied on the pianoforte
by Davinia Galea, gave a sterling première performance
of “Iconi di Donna”, penned by Prof. Peter Serracino
Inglott and put to music by Prof. Charles Camilleri specifically
for this concert.
The Corinthia Palace Hotel very nicely added to the occasion
with a reception in the foyer at the end of the concert.
WELCOME TO THE A.L.P.S. WEBSITE
If ever a sentence had a double entendre, this one was it.
It meant not only welcoming the new, long-expected ALPS website
into existence but also welcoming members and friends to the
Founder-President Guido Saliba officially inaugurated the
website during the Anniversary Celebration Dinner at the Radisson
SAS Bay Point Resort on Saturday 20th March. The event attracted
unprecedented interest from ALPS members, including those
who have been fully-paid-up members since 1994 and who received
a Certificate of Continuous Membership to mark the occasion.
The Radisson’s Clermont Room was packed with ALPS members
and their spouses or partners for a pre-dinner Thanksgiving
Mass concelebrated by Spiritual Director Fr William Bartolo
and Fr Albert Felice Pace OP, a Lyceum Past Student who was
visiting from the USA. The dinner was attended by just under
200 persons in the Carlson Suite.
Specially invited guests at the head table included Mr Winston
V. Zahra, whom the ALPS Council of Administration had unanimously
elected the first Honorary Life Member for his continuous
support in ALPS activities; Mr Stephen d’Alessandro,
sponsor of the ALPS website; Mr Karl Fiorini, undisputed main
organiser of the Concert of Compositions by Charles Camilleri;
and Fr Bartolo. Dr Saliba presented Mr Zahra with a crystal
decanter engraved with the ALPS anniversary logo, while Deputy
President George Stagno Navarra in turn presented Dr Saliba
with a plate hand-painted with the same logo. Throughout the
rest of the evening the guests were entertained by Kevin Callus
on the synthesiser and vocalist Natalie Vella.
WELL DONE BICYCLE MARATHON!
Providentially, the revived Lyceum Bicycle Marathon was held
at The Lyceum on the last weekend of March, with the willing
assistance of ALPS in the organisation. This effectively made
the marathon the last fixture of this very successful 10th
anniversary – and a fitting finale it was, too, with
ALPS presenting a sponsorship of Lm100 towards the final astounding
figure of over Lm14,000 which the marathon raised for the
Community Chest Fund. Well done all, indeed!
THINKING AHEAD TO THE SPIRITUAL
This year’s Day of Spiritual Retreat will be held at
Manresa House outside Victoria, Gozo, on Saturday 26th June
and will again be led by Mr John Formosa of the MUSEUM.
As the attendees of previous Days of Retreat will know, space
is very limited, so all those wishing to participate please
phone Secretary-General Alex Borg on 21 386812 or e-mail on
email@example.com. The price for the full day, including
breakfast, lunch and dinner, will be Lm9 per person.
MORE E-MAIL ADDRESSES NEEDED
Although it is an open secret that both the paid-up and active
membership lists of the Association of Lyceum Past Students
could and should be much longer than they are, it is just
as obvious that a large majority of the current membership
hold e-mail addresses that they could let Secretary-General
Alex Borg have in order to cut down on the costs of mailing
ALPS News in hard copy. How about it?
NEW MEMBERSHIP DRIVE
At one of its latest meetings the Administrative Council
decided to renew efforts for a new membership drive. The aim
is not only to increase the number of past Lyceum students
who enrol and dutifully pay their annual or lifetime membership
fees, but more importantly to increase the number of members
who actively support the Association’s efforts and activities
by actually attending them and enticing others to do likewise.
Every current ALPS member is sure to know and still be in
frequent or occasional contact with at least six other former
classmates. If each member could only entice one other to
join ALPS, that would automatically mean double the membership.
The Council is sure that most current members can do even
better than that.